Realities are greater than ideas.

@Pontifex keeps saying this and I think his understanding of this is something that sets him apart from his immediate predecessors.

This is why his papacy is so necessary right now in this messy world where we live. 1/
The #McCarrickReport, which likely wouldn't have been commissioned (and certainly would never be made public) by his predecessors, shows an institutional Church and 2 popes who placed an idealized vision of Catholicism over the reality of the abuse by leaders in the Church. 2/
I accept at face value the explanation that John Paul II fell prey to the lies of predators like McCarrick & Maciel, and thought they were innocent.

He certainly wouldn't CONDONE abuse. But he clearly placed his trust in clerics over the people of God. 3/
For JP2, the "idea" of leaders like Maciel and Law and McCarrick - who championed orthodoxy, brought in vocations, and raised lots of money - was greater than the REALITY of the dark secrets they harbored and the innocent lives they ruined. In other words, clericalism. 4/
Francis himself isn't immune from this clericalism. He trusted McCarrick (to what extent is unclear). He certainly trusted whoever advised him about Barros in Chile. In no small part because he trusted the judgment of his predecessors about these men. 5/
I think (well, I hope) Chile was a turning point for him. It seems he finally realized that any trust that is rooted in clericalism is a foolish trust. Thank God for the courage of survivors like @jccruzchellew who didn't stop when the Church tried to silence them. 6/
But this is part of Francis's makeup. Where his predecessors drew straight lines based on strict moral ideas (absolutely no sacraments for the divorced and remarried; no civil unions, ever), he looks for the opportunities that exist in the messy realities of everyday life. 7/
This is not "watering down" Catholic doctrine or the Gospel. He just knows that God is calling EACH OF US to draw nearer to him in every moment of our lives, whatever we are doing. And every moment presents an opportunity for a first step toward God. 8/
Too many of us have fallen into this idea that God expects us to have a perfect, non-messy idyllic life. I know there's a lot of pressure in "orthodox" Catholic circles to project this. Vulnerability, struggle, doubt, and depression are seen as weakness. 9/
In this type of Catholic culture, not only do we we feel pressure to project an image of piety and confidence (so we are seen as "holy"), but we are also conditioned to look down on others who don't line up with this vision. 10/
And in order to keep up the appearance of holiness, things like abuse, infidelity, addiction, mental illness, and all kinds of sin are kept hidden and allowed to fester. Meanwhile, intolerance and judgmentalism rise to the surface. 11/
The message of @Pontifex (whether it's deliberate or not), is a finger in the eye to this approach. He basically says, "let's acknowledge the fact that the world is a mess, and no Catholic is even close to perfect. We'll work with what we've got, and let's include everyone." 12/
That is hard for many Catholics to accept. They want a culture war. They want clear lines drawn so they can hold others accountable. They want a strong fortress where they (the elect) can take refuge and fight those outside the walls. 13/
But that's an idea. It's not reality. It's not what the Church is.

Realities are greater than ideas.

Pope Francis is asking us to work within the reality, not to imagine that we can impose ideas on everyone else. Sadly, many Catholics can't handle that. 14/14

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10 Nov
The greatest TV dad of all time, and I am just realizing it now.
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9 Nov
Letter from the pastor who replaced the now-excommunicated priest abuser Fr Jeremy Leatherby in the Diocese of Sacramento.…
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Yes, and...?

'the contemptuous comments responding to my words about the “children of Light” and the “children of darkness,” as if my “apocalyptic tones” were the fruit of a ravingly mad mind and not the simple observation of reality.'
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I'm 89% certain that Mr Davis of @CrisisMag (1) didn't read the Vanity Fair article closely, & (2) is clueless about the contributors to @Where_Peter_is, many of whom also have big families, homeschool, and attend the EF, BUT happen to be in full communion with the pope as well.
This part where he mentions @rightscholar killed me though: Image
In other words, "The forces of evil have propped up three of the most important figures in the nation's capital: the President-Elect, the Speaker of the House, and the Cardinal Archbishop of Washington, DC... plus this guy Dave from Ontario who blogs in his spare time."

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Once again, with feeling:

The reactionary, anti-Francis movement that is poisoning the Catholic Church is divorced from reality, history, human decency, common sense, cultural progress, civil rights, the common good, and God's will.…
No, the title is not satire (as I'd hoped):

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Oh it gets worse:

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